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Health Benchmarks and Framework for a Return to In Person Learning Approved

Plan requires two weeks of moderate community spread before phased implementation

FLAGSTAFF, Arizona - The Flagstaff Unified School District (FUSD) Governing Board held a special meeting on Tuesday, October 6, 2020 where they approved a framework for a return to in person learning when certain health benchmarks are met. The recommendations were unanimously approved by the FUSD Governing Board and include flexibility for students and families requesting to stay in a remote learning environment.

To initiate the phased return to in person learning, FUSD must be within the Moderate (Yellow) community spread level for two consecutive weeks using health data posted each Friday by the Coconino County Health and Human Services Department and in accordance with guidelines established by the Arizona Department of Health and Arizona Department of Education.  Case incidence data must be less than 75 per 100,000 and have a Percent Positivity 5% or below for two weeks to initiate the phased return to in-person learning.

If health benchmark data worsens after the return to in-person learning to the Substantial (Red) community spread level with case incidence data above 150 per 100,000 and Percent Positivity above 10%, FUSD will monitor and plan for possible transition to full remote learning during the first week. In the second week, if the data continues at a higher level, transition to full remote learning will begin  the following week.  If the health data improves, continue in-person learning with no change.

Current health data, issued on October 2, 2020, indicates the community spread of COVID-19, in the areas served by FUSD, is within the Substantial (Red) category with Case incidence data at 236 per 100,000 and Percent Positivity at 7%.  Therefore, FUSD will remain in full remote learning until the health data improves to the levels described above.  


FUSD is committed to provide weekly updates about the status of the health benchmarks that are being monitored and our next steps to families and the public.  Families can expect updates weekly via email that will also be available on  


A phased return to in-person learning was developed by FUSD staff and approved by the Governing Board.  When the health benchmark data indicates it is safe to do so, students will return to school sites according to the following schedule.

Week 1:

  • Teachers and Staff return to district sites and schools

Week 2:

  • Initial students return to in-person learning (5 days per week) 
  • Grade Bands:  PK, K, 1, 2, 6, 9, 12, *Special Education Specialized Programs

Week 3:

  • Additional students return to in-person learning (5 days per week) 
  • Grade Bands:  3, 8, 10, 11

Week 4:

  • Final students return to in-person learning (5 days per week) 
  • Grade Bands:  4, 5, 7

*Special Education Specialized Programs: Students are out of the general education classroom for a majority of their day. 

FUSD students will continue to have the option to remain in full remote learning throughout the 2020-2021 school year, based on student health needs or family preference, with the opportunity to transition to in-person learning at quarterly intervals.  Parents/Families will be informed to contact their child’s teacher or the school administrator to discuss their preference. 


For more information about the FUSD Safely Forward Plan, please visit